Plans for a new tourism division court take place as fear of crime grips more tourists

 | Wed 29 May 2013 10:20 ICT

CityNews – Chiang Mai might well become home to a new tourism division court in the attempt to increase visitors? confidence in Thai law and legal services, says Tourism Minister Somsak Pureesrisak.

Chiang Mai, in comparison to Phuket, has a low crime rate, although robberies and bag snatching is fairly common

The Tourism Division court could potentially help tourists who are likely to only be in the country for a short period of time but have been victims of theft or robbery, meaning they could be involved with lengthy trials.

Somsak and Court of Justice officials have suggested that by creating a tourism litigation division at courts and extending office hours, hearings involving tourists could be expedited. It also aims to provide better protection for tourists be victims to unfair treatment by tourist agencies. The prospect of opening a night court to speed up tourist-related cases has also been discussed.

Tourist division courts will also be established in other popular tourist sectors such as Bangkok, Pattaya, Chiang Mai and Phuket.

The plans for the new establishments are part of efforts to increase Thailand?s tourism income to 2 trillion baht by 2015. It is believed that the advancement of facilities and services is believed to attract richer visitors to the Kingdom. A priority is improving tourism safety, says Tourism Minister Somsak. A record figure of 22 million tourist arrivals was recorded in Thailand in 2012, and this year the aim is for Thailand to recieve 24 million tourists.

As an international law firm in Thailand, we appreciate that sometimes international tourists have to deal with Thailand law and the legal service in Thailand,? said Apisakde Kongkangwanchoke, spokesman for Bamrung Suvicha Apisakdi Law Associates. ?The establishment of a tourism division at courts could go a long way in boosting foreign visitors? confidence in dealing with Thai law.?